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Full text of "Long Lance"

LONG   LANCE

northward, we came upon a 'buffalo stone' lying
on the prairie; and we decided to stop and hold a
Buffalo Dance, to see what luck we were going to
have in our quest of buffalo, which were becoming
scarcer every day on the plains of the Far North-
West where they were fighting valiantly to survive
the slaughter being waged against them in the
country south of us—of which country we knew
little, but of which we heard much from the lone
half-breed traders who came among us with their
kegs of whisky. They offered the Indians a pint
of liquor for every buffalo robe they could pro-
duce, and soon the buffalo robe became known
among the Indians as 'a pint of fire-water'. But
our chiefs were strongly against 'fire-water', and
they counselled our braves not to accept any of it,
as it would 'destroy their hearts and make them
cowards'.

Where we used to sit on the sunny plains and
watch the buffalo grazing by the thousands, we
now travelled for days In order to see one or two
lone buffalo feeding nervously at the bottom of
some out-of-the-way coulee. Now and then we
would see as many as ten in one herd, but never
more. Chief Apa-anlstau of the South Piegan
band of Blackfeet had told our chief that the
frightened buffalo had wintered in the Far North
that year, and that we could find them if wre
journeyed far enough in that direction.

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